National Hot Pastrami Sandwich Day Ushers In New Era For R.I. Deli Meats

8 01 2010

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Deli fans from across the Ocean State will mark Jan. 16, 2010 as the official return of the hot pastrami sandwich, as NYDP – that’s right, the New York Deli Patrol – is set to present an experience at Eastside Marketplace that’s unparalleled on this side of the East River.

The Boston-based artisan deli meat company, which is a newcomer to the Providence area, will be at the market from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for a celebration of National Hot Pastrami Sandwich Day (officially on Jan. 14) , a day filled with, you guessed it, hot pastrami sandwiches using only first-cut briskets.

New York Deli Patrol’s hot artisan pastrami meat craze has taken restaurants in nearby Boston by storm. Their legions of fans include famed attorney and pastrami connoisseur Alan Dershowitz, who has a sandwich named after him at a Fenway neighborhood eatery that is aptly named “The Dersh.”

Dan Estridge, Founder, Curator, and Chief Flavor Officer of New York Deli Patrol and a New York native who grew up just outside the city, says he wants to bring the taste sensations that he vividly remembers from his youth to New Englanders who have never experienced the wonders of an authentic hot pastrami sandwich.

“You know, there are a few first-time sensations in life for which there can be no adequate preparation,” Estridge said. It’s warm, steamy, sexy, juicy, salty, spicy, smoky, succulent, and meltingly tender, I’m getting weak thinking about it again.”

Estridge and his company use only the finest quality meats available; no artificial fillers or the waterlogged cold cuts that one would typically find at the deli section of a supermarket.

“For a lot of supermarkets, their capacity to understand these richer products is truly limited,” Estridge said. “When people bite down into an authentic pastrami sandwich, they enjoy it as a real indulgence.”

New York Deli Patrol’s arrival comes at a time when the number of Providence delicatessens has dwindled significantly, particularly during the great recession. Many area delis like Gourmet Deli on the Square in Wayland Square have shuttered its doors after finding success in the catering business, while others, such as 729 Hope Cafe in the Mt. Hope neighborhood, have closed shop forever. Authentic New York style delicatessen meats in Rhode Island have gone the way of Ocean State relics like Miller’s Deli on Hope Street, a neighborhood deli that for generations specialized in New York style deli meats.

Today, there are no delicatessens in the Providence metropolitan area that even come close to matching the authentic New York deli experience provided by the legendary Katz Deli, located in the heart of New York City. Estridge said that New York Deli Patrol has a chance to play a role in Providence’s deli renaissance and help Rhode Islanders get back to the glory days of the neighborhood deli.

In a way, Estridge says that this lost art form is something that many Rhode Islanders has never experienced before.

“Sadly, most people today have no experience of the kind of deli we’re referring to," Estridge said. “But when they taste our deli meats, they tell me they never knew it could be like this. Mostly, people who say they love it are more familiar with the usual sort of salty-fatty-rubber you see grilled and served on sub-rolls.”

So how does New York Deli Patrol’s hot pastrami meat compare with some of the watery, more modern deli meats at the supermarket? In many ways, it simply doesn’t, according to Estridge.

“When you’re talking watery, modern deli meats at the supermarket, let’s face it, the deli products business is a commodity business,” Estridge said. The name of the game in commercial deli-manufacturing has for decades been simply making the product cheaper. Not to say the products are inexpensive, but they have been cheapened. “

Estridge wants to hearken back to the days when the neighborhood deli experience meant something; a communal experience that was best relished with friends and juicy artisan quality deli meats piled high on rye bread.

“In the past, people regarded deli and charcuterie as artisan products,” Estridge said. “But today, in this country, the business is very industrial, and cost considerations come first. No sane businessman would make products the way we do. But we felt that somebody had to step up and save these traditions. More flavor per pound – It’s the law!”

New York Deli Patrol will be at Eastside Marketplace on Jan. 16, 2010 from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. For more information on New York Deli Patrol and their fine artisan deli meats, please visit the New York Deli Patrol Web site at



7 12 2009

OMG, I am addicted!!

So I’ve known about Glasvegas (yes, pronounced like ‘las vegas’) since, February, I think (thank you, Spin). It didn’t really catch with me. I mean, we all love ‘Geraldine’, right? I’d hear the opening chords in the gym and freak out, until it shifted into some godawful modern rock song. I fell for that trick tens of times.

Saturday I was doing my Anarchy in the UK 3 miler, and this video happened to come on:

The crushworthy-ness of the lead singer is only 1/3rd of the reason why I loved it so much.

2. Glasgow brogue!!!! Does anything else sound nearly as interesting? No.

3. 1:30-1:33: ‘What’s the story, morning glory?’ Way to touch my Brit-poppy heart.

Came home and listened to more of the album during a rain/snowstorm.

Other wicked cool things: the drummer  is a woman that had never played before (a record store clerk), but the lead singer (a former footballer) thought that she just seemed like she should be in a band.  The lead singer and the guitarist are cousins. You know that these are the factors that warm the cockles of my heart. Plus I heart Glasgow.

By last night, I had to have it. I love it so much; it’s one of those very rare albums I want to just listen to, not running or dancing or throwing a party; I want to listen to it for its own integrity. I mean, seriously, a song about social workers? Rad. (Though ‘Flowers and Football Tops’ will make you cry). These are the songs and this is the voice where you are using your iPod as a mock microphone and standing up on your bed, theatrically. Not that I’ve done that (standing up on the bed–the ceiling is too low).

Sweet Potato Pie

23 11 2009

This Thanksgiving, I thought about making the ever-ubiquitous apple pie or green bean casserole. Then everything changed when I picked up my community supported agriculture (CSA) share at the farmer’s market. This week’s pickup yielded quite a bounty; a cornucopia of broccoli, cauliflower, scallions, turnips, celery root, and a half-dozen of the tastiest eggs in the Ocean State.

At the bottom of the bag was a small paper bag that weighed a little over a pound. Inside were, you guessed it, yams. So instead of making just another boring Thanksgiving side, I’ve decided to embark upon a world that, until recently, I had been relatively unimpressed by: The world of Sweet Potato Pie. In the past, I would take a few bites from a slice of Sweet Potato Pie and scrap it for something more flavorful (Apple), heartier (Pecan), and familiar (Pumpkin). This year, I’m challenging myself to make a Sweet Potato Pie that I’ll look forward to finishing.

My inspiration is the Food Network alchemist, Alton Brown, who is known for dissecting traditional recipes and getting into the science of good food. I’m using his recipe, which can be found here:

There are, of course, one barrier that I will encounter on Thursday. My nephew is a three-year old toddler and allergic to nuts, and the recipe calls for pecans. But since the only way he’d appreciate a good pie is by wearing it on his shirt, I’m not going to be all that concerned about his tastes. This is about my tastes.

Classic: Hedi Slimane

15 11 2009



A new, occasional feature: classic flavours-of-the moment.

Hedi Slimane, previous designer for Christian Dior, was my FOTM in August 2006.

(from an email to my best friends entitled ‘Randolph Duke for Halston…was my other favourite childhood designer):

y, hedi slimane originated your haircut.  h.s. is the designer of dior homme (r. wainwright, whose new album is coming out next year!!!!!!!, is wearing d.h. by h.s. on the cover of interview)….dior homme is hands-down my favourite menswear…i would put all of my favourite men in dior homme (skinny pants, skinny ties, skinny jackets).s, franz ferdinand are devotees of dior homme as are orlando bloom and brad pitt.  apparently, he likes to cast skinny male models off the street….y, f, are you up for this? i was reading vanity fair yesterday, the best dressed issue, and i practically flipped out of my skin there was hedi slimane… i mean, honestly, i didn’t think he really existed or that he was young…i thought he was some karl lagerfeld guy…tres intriguing…so i have taken a break from obsessive googling of h.s. to write this email.  (seriously, prince ernst of hanover, best dressed?)

2 days later:

my hedi slimane fixation is starting to affect my work.  also my love of americanos. Read the rest of this entry »

Kings and Queens Video

12 11 2009

Thirty Seconds To Mars – Kings + Queens – HD

30 Seconds to Mars | MySpace Video.

Aww, you knew I was on top of this, right? (And, uh, for the moment we’ll ignore any double entendres, okay? Find me a better metaphor, and that does not include ‘all over it’, ‘waiting with bated breath’, and, possibly, ‘on that train’)

Notes after First View: Read the rest of this entry »

‘Anarchy in the UK’ RP

8 11 2009

My first 3 miler! As you can tell, I’m not an elegant runner; I’m a sweaty mess, anxiously ticking away the seconds, minutes, tenths, nervously observing my rock-like calves and quads for twinges (cos sometimes you can be too muscular),  plotting in my head two steps ahead as to what song will be most motivating, debating whether I should stop for 30 seconds.

I just started running a couple of months ago, and I’m not a twig (though I’m strong) so…it’s definitely a struggle of the will a ‘Me vs. Me’ epic battle that requires major heaps of transcendence, and just plain push.  A dear dear friend surmises that I run just so I can compile the perfect RP. There’s probably some truth to that, so much so that you can definitely guess the first three songs by now! But the others, well, some of them are courtesy of a frantic iTunes download as I was heading out the door…

Read the rest of this entry »

Waving Flag.

7 11 2009

I heard this song on WFUV (which is one of my recurring obsessions) and now I can’t stop listening to it. I tend to through that each season: there’s one song that is just on repeat forever, this is the autumn 2009 song most definitely.